The United Arab Emirates (UAE) aims to establish itself as a cryptocurrency hub, according to the country’s Minister of State for Foreign Trade, Thani Al-Zeyoudi. Speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Al-Zeyoudi said that cryptocurrency will have a “significant impact” on the nation’s international trade in the future.
It’s safe to say that the UAE is leading the way in terms of regulatory clarity for the cryptocurrency and blockchain industry.
For example, the UAE recently introduced a new licensing regime whereby crypto firms who want to operate in the emirates can get approval from the Virtual Asset Regulatory Authority (VARA). The law is in line with the “Guiding Principles” for digital asset regulation and supervision released by the Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) free economic zone’s financial regulator in September.
These regulations are designed to provide ample security for the crypto industry while also adhering to international regulations on Anti-Money Laundering (AML), countering the financing of terrorism (CFT), and complying with international financial sanctions.
The UAE and other Middle Eastern countries have made impressive progress in recent years to become some of the leading jurisdictions for crypto businesses and innovation. According to Chainalysis, the Middle East is a rapidly expanding market for cryptocurrency, accounting for 7% of global trading volumes. CNBC also reported that the UAE alone accounts for approximately $25 billion in transactions, showing a staggering 500% increase in volume from July 2020 to June 2021.